ARC Review: For the Win by Sara Rider



For the Win (The Perfect Play #1)
Author: Sara Rider
Genre: Romance, Sports, Contemporary
Release Date: June 6th, 2016
Published By: Pocket Star
ISBN: 1501132806

WHR Synopsis

Lainey Lukas has sacrificed everything—sleep, family, carbs, a life—to earn her spot as the top player and captain of the Seattle Falcons women’s soccer team. She’s determined to lead her team to a national championship and finally earn the sport the respect it deserves—and nothing will throw her off her game. When Lainey’s hero Gabe Havelak, star of the Seattle Surge, crashes her team’s first press conference—making the Falcons look like a joke to the local media and humiliating Lainey in the process—she’s hell-bent on revenge.

Charming, confident Gabe is practically a god to Seattle soccer fans, but he doesn’t mind a little friendly competition from tough-as-nails Lainey, with her top-notch athletic skills, her mile-long legs, and her girl-next-door freckles. But when he learns the Falcons are booting the Surge from their coveted practice space to the notoriously cursed Cricket Field, those warm feelings give way to crippling superstition. With his contract up for renewal and his thirty-fourth birthday just weeks away, Gabe will risk anything to protect his position with the Surge.

The rivals agree to settle their differences in a Battle of the Sexes competition—a test of skills, fitness, and willpower. At first, the situation seems win-win: Gabe gets the chance to earn back the Surge’s practice space, and Lainey’s team will finally get some much-deserved media attention. But as the friction between them becomes hot enough to spark and smolder, Lainey and Gabe are entering new territory—and with both of their careers on the line, love might just be the toughest opponent of all.




For the Win is a standalone series starter by new-to-me author Sara Rider. It is a full-length novel and yes, it does have an HEA. The biggest thing I noticed while reading For the Win is that it felt like I was watching a movie. Typically, those are the books that stick with me the longest.

For the Win starts out with a soccer field that is highly coveted by both the men’s’ and the women’s’ soccer teams. No one wants the old pitch because supposedly it’s cursed, injuries happen there, careers are lost. It’s a big deal in a superstitious sports world.

This is where Laney and Gabe come into the picture, our MCs. Neither teams want to be on that old field. They all want the new one and that catalyst causes two people to crash together and go head-to-head for it. Sparks fly at that point. It ends up being a really great rivalry between both teams.  Men vs. Woman, Guys vs. Girls, it’s team against team, however you want to put it. A full on Battle of the Sexes.

The characters are complex and fun, it’s actually a cute storyline because the things they get into and do to out do each other are great to read. You’ll find humor in here and some hilarious banter as well. There are actually two characters that aren’t the main MC’s that stick out to me everytime I think of this book.

All of that being said, there were a few parts in the book that lagged out for me and for awhile I was on the fence on my rating. The ending fixed that right up for this book.


4 star

NetGalley ARC post


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